Around 4:30 am Saturday a young man was walking on Southeast Cesar Chavez Boulevard when he was hit and killed by someone driving a car. The car driver fled the scene and is still on the loose.
Portland Police have not revealed many details about what happened but we’ve heard from a source that the victim is a 23-year-old who lived just one block from where he was hit. According to one person who obtained audio from the scene (and posted about it on this Reddit thread), the killer’s vehicle can be heard in the distance accelerating rapidly right before making impact with the victim. The PPB says their investigation thus far shows the victim was in or near a marked crosswalk at the time he was struck.
This crossing is very familiar to many Portland bike riders. SE Clinton is one of the city’s most popular bike routes and is a designated neighborhood greenway. As you can see in the Google Street View image it has green bike lanes and bike boxes on each side (both of which are occupied with bike riders).
BikePortland reader Maria Schur reached out to us because she has a friend who was victimized by a hit-and-run driver at this same location back in June. Schur said her friend was riding eastbound on Clinton with a green light around 7:30 am when someone driving a black car hit him and left him in the road. The rider broke his clavicle.
Cesar Chavez in this location has a 30 mph speed limit and consists of four general lanes with no shoulder. It has a slight downhill in the northbound direction. People who live in the area are hoping something can be done to improve safety. Road design is one thing, but the lack of justice and accountability and what feels like an increasing amount of hit-and-run crimes just adds salt to the wound.
Anyone with information about Saturday’s fatal hit-and-run should contact the PPB Traffic Investigation Unit at 503-823-2103.
UPDATE, 9:14: A memorial has been created at the northwest corner of the intersection. It includes a picture of the victim and names him as Austin Gary Boyd (1997 – 2021). We are so sad for his family and friends.
— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and firstname.lastname@example.org
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Another tragedy. What is our traffic fatality count for the year….?? 42 or 43. Unfortunately, I have lost count and it’s only September. 🙁
There will be 60 by the end of the year and 100 next year unless we decide to try E N F O R C E M E N T.
Alas, no, the city commission has decided enforcement is off the table because it has the potential to negatively affect some non-privileged people.
Not potential. It will. And that’s because the Portland Police Bureau is filled with racists who use their office to enact a personal agenda.
Why can’t the Portland Police enforce the law fairly?
Why can’t the Portland City Council hold the police accountable and put on the street a team that can do the job properly?
I think this comment from The dude needs moderating and they need to be instructed on proper decorum for the comment section. This comment was inflammatory and denigrating to many fine public servants. You wouldn’t have let that through if he or she said PBOT or the Fire Dept. (other public agencies ) were filled with racists
Well, many in the PPB ARE racists. Their actions speak louder than their words, and their words are obvious enough when they talk about picking and choosing who they clobber because of “slashed” police budgets.
How do you know “many are racist”? Have you conducted in depth interviews with every officer or is this just a feeling you have? Like in any profession I am sure there are racist individuals there of all races. This should not be tolerated. However, I think you are painting with a wide brush and it is not helpful to improving public safety in our community.
It’s all in the link below. My question for you is How do you not already know this?
***Portion of comment deleted by moderator. Direct insults and calling others “trolls” is not allowed. Thanks.***
Actually, I hear that the Portland Police are upset with the Proud Boys, because they keep leaving their dirty dishes in the sink at the Police Union hall.
I think it’s time for moderation of one’s comments. Expressing an opinion is not “trolling”.
One, let’s stop with the made up stories of the the Proud Boys being in the police union hall. Really doesn’t lend itself to a productive discussion.
Or from the Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/20/portland-police-race-reform-crime
Arrest disparities are only significant when compared to metrics like crime rates. It makes no sense to complain that the fact that police disproportionately arresting males is evidence of sexism.
Traffic division data (cited in your linked article), for example, shows that African Americans are stopped at rates lower than their representation in crashes, so the evidence suggests they are not stopped disproportionately to their rates of dangerous driving.
Taking statistics out of context to lodge serious allegations such as racism is sloppy (to use a kind word), and undermines the more credible claims that a thoughtful analysis might reveal.
And I would love to know…what *should* the statistics be – absolutely the same across all races and cultures?
So why, of the 33k stops conducted in 2019, were Black drivers stopped 17% of the time if they only constituted 11% of drivers involved in collisions?
From their own report:
“Both [traffic and non-traffic units] displayed differential stop patterns based on the perceived race of the driver, with drivers perceived to be Black / African American stopped significantly more for Non-Moving Violations and drivers perceived to be Asian stopped significantly more for Moving Violations. Non-Traffic officers also stopped Middle Eastern drivers significantly more for Moving Violations. There were also significant differences based on the severity of the observed traffic offense, with Non-Traffic officers stopping Black / African Americans and White drivers significantly more for minor offenses.”
I have no stake in the question of whether police data show evidence of bias. I’ll let the data (via careful analysis) speak for themselves.
At first glance, pretextual stops may show signs of bias when compared to collision data, but I’m not sure that’s the best metric for comparison, since pretext stops aren’t really about traffic enforcement. Perhaps a better metric for comparison would be serious crime rates. I don’t know the stats well enough to know what such a comparison would show. But the article presented no comparison at all, which was the core of my complaint.
Traffic division stops, which really are about traffic enforcement, do not show bias in the context of crash rates.
Since the statistics were presented out of context as prima facia evidence of bias (which is journalistic malpractice), I may have mistaken which they were referring to.
Can you offer specific examples of PPB actions that were clearly motivated by racism? Or is this just your general sense of things?
If you can point to a single documented instance of police discussing “picking and choosing who they clobber because of ‘slashed’ police budgets,” please do so.
was ≠ is
Well, that comes across as pretty snarky. I thought being civil was one of the ground rules for this forum. Jonathan?
I’d be happy to be corrected, but I believe there’s not much that can be done locally to make the police more accountable as there has to be changes in state laws. A year ago Lew Frederick talked about trying to pass legislation to take away some of the protections the police have and make them more accountable. Unfortunately it seems that he’s failed to make traction.
Maybe everyone should be reaching out to their state legislators to make change happen as it appears local leaders aren’t going to even try.
If there was a problem with police accountability, the legislature, mayor, city council, etc would address it. If there is a problem with the police it is insignificantly small. The real problem is unrealistic expectations from people on the left expecting police to molly-coddle people with weapons who are trying to kill them. THAT is a huge problem. Police have a right to go home to their families at night. Perhaps those “less privileged” people need training in how to respectfully and safely interact with police. Would you be OK with that?
That says nothing about a police department “filled with racists”. I’m all for the police to have trust and legitimacy in the community but falsely accusing many of being racists is not going to make that happen.
Falsely? How are the Portland Police Anti Racist? Really looking forward to your answer.
What would it take to prove the negative to your satisfaction?
Like all generalized, sweeping condemnations of broad groups of people, The Dude’s criticism is likely true of some and not of others. As imprecise and broad as it is, it’s not useful for anything besides divisive* rhetoric.
*Note that “divisive” applies quite well to people of all genders.
The stridency of anti-cop leftists isn’t winning coverts, even in Portland. Per a recent survey by the Oregonian, “18% of [Metro residents] who identified as a person of color supported decreasing the number of police in Portland while 14% of participants who identified as white did.”
That isn’t even faintly true, squareman.
I support increased accountability for PPB, starting both locally, and with a statewide effort to reign in law enforcement unions, which like most public sector unions, don’t share the interests of the general public. For decades, politicians have cow-towed to the police unions, which have grown incredibly strong — and even more arrogant. This, and the countless problematic manifestations of this dynamic, needs to be fixed.
But I see slurring the PPB as “filled with racists who use their office to enact a personal agenda” as plainly anti-cop.
If you don’t believe me, I get it, it’s more thrilling to imagine oneself in a battle of Good vs. Evil, justified in hurling poison wherever disagreement lurks. But anyone who’s actually trying to improve things — rather than just expurgate their frustrations — should understand that these pitched battles between factions disgust almost everyone else, emptying the public of those not eager to assume the worst in one another.
You don’t really though.
What a slur against public servants. I’m actually pretty disgusted with this comment. I’ve known many folks who work for DHS and they are actually dedicated public servants. DHS caseworkers deal with more crap in a year than PPB officers will in their entire career.
Considering the PPA is the biggest obstacle to improving our current situation, can you give me any solid reason to not believe the worst of PPA and PPB? Both entities have fought the accountability reform you claim you want. PPA neutered the PSSS position which would have greatly expanded PPB services for much less money, and the LEO lobbying groups opposed, successfully, both statewide police accountability measures and expanded automated traffic enforcement. PPA is currently fighting a police accountability measure that passed with over 80% of the vote.
Where are the PPB officers calling for greater accountability? Where are the PPB officers calling out PPA for its history of corruption and current blackballing of reform?
What you really want is support of the police while they kick reform and accountability down the road. We’ve seen this tactic for decades and it just doesn’t work, just like the police don’t work.
I think that a wide majority of Portlanders (and maybe Americans) would support some level of police reform, including and especially getting rid of problem officers. Unfortunately, “defund” has poisoned the well, making any talk of reform hyper-political.
Regardless, there’s nothing stopping us from improving services and non-police interventions to reduce crime before it happens. When that effort starts to bear fruit, it might make police reform a less tainted topic, but we need results, not just talk and slogans.
Thanks Squareman. Antiracist cops are weeded out. They can’t join the force to begin with. If they do squeak in, the get pushed out. There is a white supremacist culture in the Portland Police, and I feel horrible for the LGBTQ and BIPOC staff. In other cities the police have to live in the city they serve. In Portland, they take off their Proud Boy gear, and put on their uniform to drive in from an hour + away.
That is not an accurate statement about officers being required to live in the city they work in. MANY cities don’t require this and it has been shown not to be of any benefit. Does a doctor have to live in the city they see patients in? Does a teacher have to live in the city they teach in? Not a problem as far as I’m concerned.
I also believe strongly in the need for police officers to live where they work. The difference w doctors and teachers is they are not entrusted with enforcing laws and they don’t carry deadly weapons with them. It is extremely difficult for a person who lives in rural Washington to be able to understand/engage/sympathize with people who live in Portland. That lack of shared experience can result in a lack of compassion that we can’t afford officers to have.
Jonathan, I guess I don’t see what the difference is between a physician trying to relate to their patients and a police officer trying to relate to community members. I don’t think a physician has to live in Portland to connect with patients in Portland as long as they are caring and supportive of their patients. Same goes for police officers. As long as they are engaged and trying to do good for the community in which they serve, the location of where they sleep should should not matter.
Personally, I think it would be nice to have more officers live in Portland proper so community members get to know them as people. That being said with so much vitriol and hate directed towards them in Portland I can see why many of them would choose to live elsewhere.
No doubt there are various opinions on this. Here is a pro-con debate on the subject:
I can’t imagine it works well if you run into the guy you busted for selling guns the week before while walking in the park with your children. For this and other reasons, if I were a cop, I certainly wouldn’t want to live where I worked, and not because I’m racist.
Some teachers do carry deadly weapons with them; concealed of course. Most don’t because it is rare that they will need one. Police may need to use their deadly weapon at any moment 24/7/365 – that’s part of the job. Police officers being able to sympathize with people anywhere is of zero use when someone pulls out a screwdriver, knife, or gun to kill them. Your comment is out of touch with reality.
The trial for the other officers hasn’t happened. I agree with the prior conviction of Chauvin. However, in my opinion to go after 2 of the officers, Alex Keung who is black and on his 3rd day on the job and Thomas Lane who was on his 4th day is a “witch hunt”. We will see how the court rules. Fortunately, we are still a country of laws and don’t try people in the rabid “court of public opinion”
How long do you have to be on the job before we can expect an officer to intervene when their co-worker is murdering a guy right in front of them? I’d expect that from someone in the application process. Is ‘not letting your co-workers murder someone” a course they have to take after a certain amount of time on the force?
Agreed. If they knew their colleague was murdering someone they had an absolute duty (if not legal obligation) to intervene.
Thanks for the feedback. I hear what you are saying and I will consider moderating The Dude’s comment.
PPB has a long and public history of executing racist policies. Most people have just come to assume that it’s the case across the board. Those “fine individuals” are even more culpable if they stand by with this happening.
If ever there was a job for the robots. Wait–couldn’t we use speed and red light cameras? We’d have to change the law to issue citations to the registered owner and not require that the driver be identifiable in enforcement camera shots; wouldn’t that eliminate a large share of potential bias? If we can go after previous registered car owners for parking tickets without needing to know actually parked or even currently owns a vehicle, surely we can issue citations for violations caught on enforcement cameras to current registered owners. If a registrable piece of your property, such as a weapon or vehicle is used in an illegal fashion, you should be held responsible unless you can prove it had been stolen at the time the illegal activity took place.
If we want to defund the police, then let’s spend those funds on some kind of automated enforcement system. There should be zero problem with selecting locations for enforcement cameras based on the same kind of safety data we use to name “high crash” corridors and such.
We need to push state-level politicians to fix this during the next legislative session, and we need to hold politicians who oppose this measure accountable during the next election.
Jonathan, BTW, I never read a proper run-down on how the police officer’s union managed to get this stopped, last session. Such a story might fit well on this website, and I think Lisa’s matter-of-fact style and deep reporting expertise would make her a natural fit to consider writing it.
You think Lisa or Jonathan have access to private discussion done during back room dealing?
I think they’re reporters, cmh89.
Enduring a moment of your cynicism is a worthwhile price for the chance to express my curiosity to them about something important.
I think you are confusing cynicism with realism. I have a feeling that Tina isn’t going to go on the record (or even take an interview) with Lisa or Jonathan to talk about what leverage the LEO lobby used against her to kill these wildly popular bills.
Yes to going after the registered owner. Owner takes responsibility, or reveals who was actually driving. Exception if the owner has reported the car as stolen.
And let civilians submit video, which they allow in some jurisdictions in the UK. Over there, based on the video, police will go after the registered owner. Check out https://twitter.com/MikeyCycling for examples.
This is a bug bear for me. I found when I first started using a camera that PPB will not pursue road rage based solely on a video showing a motorist using a car with anger.
I still advocate for cameras, because they will stand up in court, even if PPB thumbs their noses.
The reason they thumb their noses is because, “how do I know the owner of the vehicle is driving”. I believe this to be 1) harboring and 2) biased against cyclists.
This is based on a few calls I made to the non-emergency line at PPB and the follow up with the assigned detective.
I have a fundamental problem with the line of reasoning equivalent to “if you don’t tell us who did this crime, we’re charging you.” Attributing dangerous driving to the owner of a car is no different than attributing a bank robbery to the owner of a gun, except in magnitude.
Moving violations (especially things like dangerous driving) are qualitatively different than a parking ticket, and carry much more severe consequences.
I think there would be a limit on the severity of charges that could be made “anonymously” based on registered owner. Here’s another hypothetical: someone other than the registered owner of a car parks it in a towaway zone, and the car gets impounded. Who pays to recover the vehicle?
What if we also made camera citations fine-only, so that they did not remain on the owner’s record once the fine was paid?
Maybe. I think there is great value to identifying dangerous drivers, requiring them to pay more for their insurance (so good drivers don’t subsidize them), and, if they persist, revoking their license.
But there might be a solution in there somewhere such that sanctions are more severe where the driver can be identified.
I honestly think we’ll have automated cars before we have ubiquitous automated enforcement, so I’m not going to burn too many calories on that topic.
Always, the owner. Because it is their property. If they want to settle the cost with someone, then they may do that. But as far as the impound is concerned, only the legal owner is justified in recovering the vehicle.
It is a very different case between guns and cars. You don’t just fail to notice when your car is being used by someone. For that reason, the owner should be liable at all times.
Not even touching the guns debate because that is not cogent to the topic.
If I steal your registered baseball bat (ha ha) and kill a bunch of people with it, should you be held responsible? (FYI: With firearms, that exact law (SB 554) was passed in Oregon this year.)
What kind of camera will detect a weaving car due to drunk driver? Or a car making a turn without using a signal? Or a car driving around with no lights on? Or a car speeding where there is no speed detection device? The list of infractions that would not be detectable would be very long, criminals would know it, they’d respond by driving unsafely more often, and far more people would be killed by them than would be killed by armed police officers making traffic stops.
Does PPB Chief Lovell know about this?
What “personal agenda”? I hope you’ll be specific.
Read it and weep (very specific, btw): https://www.opb.org/article/2021/02/07/portland-has-5th-worst-arrest-disparities-in-the-nation-according-to-data/
“I have a Black friend so I can’t be racist”
You make it sound as if ONLY minorities are getting pulled over. The data showed that is clearly not the case.
Even this is a red herring. There are plenty of places with higher road fatalities than us that have many more LEOs and there are places with lower road fatalities than us that have many more LEOs.
The danger of a road comes down to multiple factors, one of which includes enforcement. The most cost efficient way to reduce road deaths is to create infrastructure that prevents high speeds is the first place. Then severe punishment for those that can’t play by the rules.
Right now, we have poor infrastructure that is designed to allow for excessive speeds, we have almost no enforcement, and what little we have results in a slap on a wrist. The wealthy can essentially just pay for the privilege to speed.
There is also no will to solve the problem. Look at the dead-on-arrival ordinance to stop the side shows.
If we don’t want people to speed, we need stop building smooth, long, and straight drag strips as roads. If we want pedestrians to be safe, we need to build evidence-base infrastructure for them to use.
If nobody is getting caught and everyone can do it, it is not a privilege. I doubt it is just the wealthy who are speeding.
Yeah, the beat up Jeep I saw this morning at 5 AM pulling a trailer without lights and no plates on NE 122nd would likely not be a wealthy person. I didn’t pay attention if they were speeding as I was making sure they didn’t swerve into me while I was going the other direction.
This is what “defund” looks like.
[No need to tell me we didn’t cut the police by much. This may be true. But the idea of defunding is to drain the police of resources, and, for various reasons, this is what has happened. We are significantly underpoliced. The “community” is unable to pick up the slack, so we end up with lawlessness, with death and misery seeping into every quarter of the city.]
Let’s avoid the rhetorical rabbit hole of what constitutes “defunding” the police and skip to what we know:
This is what shrinking a short-staffed police force looks like.
I accept your friendly amendment to my comment.
A big chunk of the police force shrank itself because they didn’t enjoy the scrutiny they were receiving. I’d like to think that represents an opportunity to replace those officers with people who are more willing to accept accountability.
For many of them, it seemed to be the exploding fireworks and the threat of another Molotov cocktail thrown their way.
They get a quarter of a billion dollars to do their job. They are failing on purpose so that they can ask for more money. Make their union pay for their lawsuits, and get rid of Qualified Immunity, and we will have an uber efficient police force
Your comment is pretty insulting teachers and their union.
Take that back. Teachers are HEROS. They deserve more pay, smaller class sizes. Teachers unions are respectable. Please do NOT compare police to teachers.
Police are like teachers, in that they instruct us as to what is allowed in a civil society and what is not.
I’m sorry about the teachers you had.
If your “heroes” taught you to argue your point by demanding that everybody else SHUT UP, I rest my case. Hell, if they taught you to spell “heroes” that way, I rest my case.
True. Brian Hunzeker makes about $50/hr base pay with regular overtime for joining traffic court hearings via zoom. Erik Krammemer has a $120k salary. Both are on desk duty. It’s hard to imagine them being effective officers on the street, given the extent to which they’ve formed an adversarial relationship with the community they’re charged to “protect”.
And the bureau is supposed to be underfunded?
After these people are done defunding the municipal police force, they’re really going to enjoy the private security contractors that step in to fill the security void.
Or the armed residents who provide “security” on their own.
And so it goes.
Senseless violence on the streets, and no will to put an end to it or people in leadership positions who are willing to even pay lip service to the idea that a culture that is built around high powered deadly machines is a bad idea.
I am sorry to hear of this incident, but I am rather surprised at the current discussion centering on enforcement rather than the design of Cesar Chavez.
Regardless of the volume of traffic carried on this road, there should never be a four lane shoulderless roadway through a densely populated neighborhood. At a minimum there should be a road diet implemented and corner bulbouts, etc.
I believe safe roads start with design first, with required safe behavior controlled largely by the roadway design, not by a camera or enforcement.
I don’t disagree with your statement in theory. However, we have the streets that we have, and rebuilding them is going to be a slow and expensive process. We need to find ways to live with what we have until we can upgrade.
Why rebuild? Just put out orange cones and hay bales where there ought to be protected bikeways and bulbouts, with the odd Jersey barrier to keep trucks in check. Then leave it up for a few decades, like an ongoing construction zone.
I agree! Southbound drivers gun it to get up the hill and with 2 lanes each way there isn’t room for error.
Our family walked from Clinton to Division on that stretch is Cesar Chavez and while there’s a sidewalk it’s filthy with trash from the road and the cars are going by so fast and so close.
Had a buddy get clobbered there a month ago, they were crossing, on Clinton, on a green and a red light running, speeding driver nailed them and took off.
I do hope PBOT does anything at that intersection. Nothing that improves east/west safety from north/south drivers have been made there in at least 10 years.